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tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 8:48 am

I have been thinking about war. Many times have I heard people voice an opinion that is something along the lines that military offensive action is horrible, but defense is totally moral.

When I think about war I see that which we observe and label as war as merely the tip of the iceberg, an iceberg that under the surface constitutes pretty much the entire physical world. I think it is a matter of where do you draw the line, what do you decide to call war, and what do you decide to call business as usual. Because I think it's all war, it's just a matter of degree. And military operations are not all about guns and bombs, there's a ton of other things, such as surveillance, psychological operations etc. It ties in with even such things as what children's books are published. And I see this as an inevitable consequence of how the world works.

Furthermore, I think this dynamic is very much like a chemical equilibrium reaction (reversible reaction), where these arrows are used when writing an equation:

Image






The borders of countries did not pop up from nowhere, they were fought over, and have to continuously be fought over on a thousand fronts and in a thousand dimensions. If I have a certain job I didn't just get it from nowhere, I had to look for a job, I had to travel to the workplace and prove that I could perform the job, and then I had to show up on time every day and keep proving that I can perform the job every day. If I were to begin neglecting my duties someone else would soon replace me. And as far as I'm concerned every day is a struggle, every day is exertion of power fueled by desire and fear. And this is true no matter how laid-back your job, no matter how serene and humane the atmosphere. In fact, a lot of times you have to go through quite some struggle to attain a position that is serene to any degree, and mental inhibitions that make you less willing, interested or able to strive for that will most likely result in you ending up in more brutal conditions.

So is there really any substance at all to the commonly held view of distinguishing offense and defense, or are they really one and the same? I think they are basically one and the same thing, and it's all a mind trick to have this division. Any entity is constantly bombarded by outer forces, and is in constant struggle against them.



Humanaut
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04 Jan 2015, 8:53 am

tomato wrote:
So is there really any substance at all to the commonly held view of distinguishing offense and defense, or are they really one and the same?

What is the commonly held view?



tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 9:01 am

Humanaut wrote:
tomato wrote:
So is there really any substance at all to the commonly held view of distinguishing offense and defense, or are they really one and the same?

What is the commonly held view?

to distinguish offense from defense



Humanaut
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04 Jan 2015, 9:10 am

That's not a view in itself.

Here are some common definitions which could be used in different contexts. Looks reasonable to me.

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/offense
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/defense



tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 9:16 am

Humanaut wrote:
That's not a view in itself.

Here are some common definitions which could be used in different contexts. Looks reasonable to me.

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/offense
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/defense

You can shape minds by shaping language.

Quote:
'Don't you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In
the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no
words in which to express it. Every concept that can ever be needed, will be
expressed by exactly one word, with its meaning rigidly defined and all its
subsidiary meanings rubbed out and forgotten. Already, in the Eleventh Edition,
we're not far from that point. But the process will still be continuing long after you
and I are dead. Every year fewer and fewer words, and the range of consciousness
always a little smaller. Even now, of course, there's no reason or excuse for
committing thoughtcrime. It's merely a question of self-discipline, reality-control.
But in the end there won't be any need even for that. The Revolution will be
complete when the language is perfect. Newspeak is Ingsoc and Ingsoc is
Newspeak,' he added with a sort of mystical satisfaction. 'Has it ever occurred to
you, Winston, that by the year 2050, at the very latest, not a single human being will
be alive who could understand such a conversation as we are having now?'
1984, George Orwell



Humanaut
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04 Jan 2015, 9:21 am

Offensive tactics are often used within defensive contexts.



tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 10:04 am

Humanaut wrote:
Offensive tactics are often used within defensive contexts.

Exactly, the line is so blurred as to be virtually meaningless.

Quite possibly it could be argued that pressuring the system as a whole into a state of exertion might for example further evolution, quite possibly spiritual evolution. There are two points I'd like to make in that context.

1) When someone who has the upper hand tries to increase the oppression of those subjugated, this might backlash in the form of the one who has the upper hand losing power or other benefits. This is also related to how for example fishing industry can't fish too much and too hard, because the fish population will not be able to recover from the fishing, thereby making the operation uneconomical in the long term.

2) The oppressed people will learn from their suffering. "necessity is the mother of invention" The oppression works similarly to selective pressure in biology. The same mechanisms that operate in biology operate in technology, societal institutions, social behavior and all kinds of things.

So, with that you could further have a debate around slavery, colonialism and imperialism, any form of class division in society.



tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 10:16 am

tomato wrote:
There are two points I'd like to make in that context.

There is also another point I'd like to make.



I thought it was interesting to hear the thoughts on left and right in politics that he talks about. But when I was finished watching the video I thought more about what he said.

He illustrates the difference between rightist and leftist politics as rightist politics being hierarchical, like mountain climbing, always striving upward etc. Watch the video to hear exactly what he says, I'm just pulling bits from my memory now. And then he compared that to the leftist politics that dominates society today which is the opposite, you don't care about striving upward, you care about what everybody thinks, and the result is a pathetic society forever falling downward into its lowest possible form, its lowest common denominator etc. And he says that the aristocracy of today has no role, it has lost its role in society today, because in today's society everything is about money, being an efficient machine etc.

This made me think about something that I have been thinking about before also. Is it really that way, or is it just how it appears?

Let me explain. In the power struggle that is life you always compete against something outside of you. There is always a competitor, an adversary of some kind. In the struggle against your competitors all means are allowed. I think of psychological warfare and subversion tactics. Then I think about how the leftist paradigm that he describes is perhaps imposed from without as a subversion tactic, even a lot of times appearing to come from within due to the effect of mind control. But that there is a group in the world, whether known or unknown, visible or invisible I don't know, which is on top of this paradigm, and applying rightist philosophy, this then being the real aristocracy. If this is the case it could be argued that his analysis is wrong, society is not different from in the past, there is still the same power struggle, still the rightist paradigm, it's just that the subverted sphere is so large that it almost appears to be all-encompassing. And that for this reason it is also not true that the aristocracy has no role. Perhaps only that the real aristocracy is not the group we might think but another.

Another thought I had is that it surprises me a bit that he mentions no thoughts whatsoever of this kind. That makes me wonder why. Does this not ever cross his mind? Does he simply not think it is the case, or even a worthwhile speculation? Or is it too sensitive to bring up, too politically incorrect, something that might potentially jeopardize his reputation, career etc? Because I would think that these kinds of speculations and discussions are perhaps bordering into the conspiratorial as opposed to what's merely considered political philosophy, and therefore perhaps closely connected to the perceived lunatic sphere of discussions. Which is interesting though because he mentions how the thoughts of Julius Evola are by a lot of people today viewed in a light that is similar to that, inhuman etc.



Last edited by tomato on 04 Jan 2015, 10:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 10:20 am

I personally think that socialism and Christianity are more or less synonymous. Both are systems by which a large part of society is oppressed by a smaller part, due to their liberty. However, I personally think that the suffering that socialists and Christians inflict upon themselves is what enlightens them, and there quite possibly was no other way to enlighten them.



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04 Jan 2015, 11:07 am

tomato wrote:
Humanaut wrote:
Offensive tactics are often used within defensive contexts.
Exactly, the line is so blurred as to be virtually meaningless.

To some, perhaps.



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04 Jan 2015, 11:49 am

Humanaut wrote:
tomato wrote:
Humanaut wrote:
Offensive tactics are often used within defensive contexts.
Exactly, the line is so blurred as to be virtually meaningless.

To some, perhaps.

Think about it. I'll take an example. Let's say that you want to defend a country's borders from intrusion. You can't just sit and wait for an offender, if you always do this you will constantly be one step behind the intruder, and you'll be pushed back further and further until you are no longer a name on the map. You always have to be one step ahead of the opponent. So, you'll have to send spies into enemy territory, scan for signals etc. The border between two countries is just one very obvious line between two countries. Most of "a country" is much harder to pinpoint, and sometimes rather abstract in nature. And it isn't about countries only, the exact same applies to companies and other entities. The geographic area is just one measure of a country. A country might have the same borders yet change its scope up or down in other areas over time, due to interaction with outside forces.

Another example. Company A is competing with company B over costumers. Let's say that if company A has a commercial on TV on Friday evening and company B doesn't almost all costumers will choose company A. Company A has not yet called the TV station and as of yet only has ads in the newspaper. When company A has bought the commercial time on TV on Friday night the deal might be closed with the TV station and it's too late for company B to buy that time. So company B can make a move now, before company A, and buy that time. Result: almost all the customers choose company B, and company A now has so little money that they have no chance to compete with company B anymore. What is defensive and what is offensive in this scenario?



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04 Jan 2015, 11:57 am

What was the context again?



tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 12:12 pm

Humanaut wrote:
What was the context again?

What? The question is whether the division between offense and defense is an illusion. I think I have shown some examples of how that line in many cases is very unclear. And even where it appears to be clear I would argue that if you were to just look deep enough the line would in many cases be blurred.



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04 Jan 2015, 12:19 pm

War was the context. Wasn't it?



tomato
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04 Jan 2015, 1:04 pm

Humanaut wrote:
War was the context. Wasn't it?


tomato wrote:
When I think about war I see that which we observe and label as war as merely the tip of the iceberg, an iceberg that under the surface constitutes pretty much the entire physical world. I think it is a matter of where do you draw the line, what do you decide to call war, and what do you decide to call business as usual. Because I think it's all war, it's just a matter of degree. And military operations are not all about guns and bombs, there's a ton of other things, such as surveillance, psychological operations etc. It ties in with even such things as what children's books are published. And I see this as an inevitable consequence of how the world works.
So, I see society in so-called peace time also as being in war, cold war if you will. As I said, I view pretty much the entire physical world as one big war.